facebook.com/coachlana Day 17 of 31 - How Much Carbs, Fats, Protein Do We Need Each Day

Hello everyone. I'm so excited that you decided to join me in our 31 days to cleaner or healthier eating. Each one of these videos will have 1 simple concept for you to chew on. It's your choice what you do with it. Try it for a day, a week, a month or implement for your entire life. My hope is it helps you open your mind to learning more about fueling your body more healthily.

Part of cleaning up what we eat is getting educated and alot of these videos focus on awareness.

Today we talk about carbohydrate, fat, protein servings and yes, this is another topic that could be pages and pages. Here is just a brief overview, please research for yourself if you want to dig deeper.

When deciphering what is a balanced diet for you, you need to decide how your mind works. Are you the type that likes to visualize it, do you work better in grams, in percentages, something else?

I'm very visual, therefore the choosemyplate.gov USDA guidelines are appealing to my eyes. If I look at my plate half of it should have fruits and vegetables on it, the other half is protein and whole grains. The daily recommendations look like 3 cups of dairy (Not sure what vegans are supposed to do here. I've heard that this was due to lobbying of the dairy industry. They were peeved that dairy was not identified on the plate. Personally I would include this as part of my protein allotment.), 2-3 cups of vegetables, 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit, 5-6.5 ounces of protein (fish, eggs, meat, poultry, other. Hmmm? Could dairy be put here and add a few ounces? Stop whining dairy industry.), 5-8 ounces of whole grains, 5-7 teaspoons of sweets, fats and oils per day.

Livestrong.com is one resource where I found percentages if you like that. They took their recommendations form the 2010 USDA dietary guidelines. Adults 19 and older should have 45-65% carbohydrates (whole grains, fruits, vegetables), 10-35% protein (close to what we came up with from previous video), 20-35% from fat. (We figured out how to calculate daily calories and how to convert to grams in the protein video. Revisit that video/blog post if you want to calculate this out. Note that protein is 4 calories, fat is 10 calories, and carbohydrates are 9 calories when converting calories to grams.)

Maybe it's easier to think in terms of serving sizes. Heart.org separates it out a little more detailed, but it's very nice. 6-8 servings of whole grains, 4-5 servings of vegetables, 4-5 servings of fruit, 2-3 servings of dairy, 3-6 ounces of cooked meat, poultry or seafood, 2-3 servings of fat/oils per day. The following are per week: 4-5 servings nuts, seeds, legumes, 5 or fewer for sweets and added sugars.

Here are some serving size examples, 1 serving:

Half cup cooked grain = one cupped palm
One piece of fruit = tennis ball
One quarter cup dried fruit
One cup leafy greens
Half cup cooked, frozen or canned legumes
Three ounces of meat = deck of cards
One egg
One ounce of cheese = two nine volt batteries
One third cup of nuts = small handful

Although these are daily suggestions. It's important to note our bodies function better when we have a combination of fat, carbohydrates and proteins in every meal or snack. So aim for a good mix. We will talk about pre, during and post ratios in another video. Also note, we are all unique individuals. Your daily intake will vary depending on your health, your activity level, dietary needs/choices and other factors. You will need to experiment to see what works for you.

Decide what method or thought process works for you and see if your daily combination of food is giving you the amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that you need. Do you think you need to make any adjustments?

Thanks for your time. This is Coach Lana and I would love for you to join me at facebook.com/coachlana so we can connect.

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